Thursday, July 29, 2010

The Long Arm of the Law!

Season: 2
Episode Number: 28
Season Episode Number: 2
Production Number: 201
Airdate: December 11, 2009

Writer: Jim Krieg
Director: Ben Jones

Voices: Diedrich Bader (Batman), Tom Kenny (Plastic Man), Stephen Root (Woozy Winks), Jeff Bennett (Rubberneck), Jeffrey Combs (Kite Man), Jennnifer Hale (Ramona).

Plot: Kite Man kidnaps the Plastic Family in an attempt to get revenge on Plastic Man.

Teaser: Plastic Man and Batman must be vewy, vewy qwiet while trying to save some Boy Scouts from the Shaggy Men.

Review (Warning! Spoilers!): Rather than Batman: the Brave and the Bold, this episode seems like an episode of Plastic Man: the Brave and the Bold with this week's guest star, Batman! With much more character than he has ever received in this series so far, an excellent supporting cast, and the beginnings of a rogues gallery, I wonder if this was a little taste of the Plastic Man series that never made it past pilot phase back in 2006.

Due to a scheduling switcharoo, this episode is actually the debut of Plas' comic relief sidekick, Woozy Winks, even though we have already met him in the episode that aired previously, Death Race to Oblivion.

I'm not sure why Plastic Man need comic relief, but Woozy is a welcome addition to the Plastic cast and brings a different form of comedy to the episode. Plas' wife and child are introduced, taken straight out of the Ruby-Spears Plastic Man - Baby Plas Super Comedy Show from 1980, although Penny's name is changed to Ramona for reasons unknown to me.

The plot of Long Arm of the Law is pretty straight forward but allows to really expand on Plas' character and backstory. We are reintroduced to Kite Man, a fairly obscure character from the 60s, who is out for revenge on Plastic Man who used to be a Kite Man thug but ended up ratting him out in court. You will remember seeing a bit of this story in Terror on Dinosaur Island. This show is light on continuity, so it is nice to have little moments like this.

Kite Man is clearly not a serious character. I mean, wanting to be the most famous kite-related person in the world? Yet the writers are able to not only keep Kite Man's illusion that he is actually on par with the Joker, but also make him a viable threat. That takes some work but they pulled it off here.

Plastic Man episodes have some of the best animation. I am a big fan of Looney Tunes, so it is especially exciting to me any time I see a character squash and stretch in a world of densely animated characters.

This episodes teaser was amusing, using some rather obscure characters, the Shaggy Men, and an ages-old joke. Nothing special, but not a downer either. Over all, this is a great episode and one that should have kicked off the second season, but for some reason didn't.

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Orphen said...

I watched this episode the other day, and I enjoyed it. It definitely shows how light the show can be, even a bit zany whenever Plastic Man is involved. Overall, a successful episode.

Paul said...

I completely agree that "Long Arm of the Law" is better than "Death Race to Oblivion". The latter is a bit dull really.

Just thought I'd add that there's a little mistake in your episode guide: "Day of the Dark Knight!" was the 4th one produced and "Invasion of the Secret Santas!" was the 5th produced. Sorry to be a pain. :)